The K5 and K7 are Karcher’s premium pressure washers designed to offer maximum performance, but is the K7 worth the extra money?
In this article I’ll be directly comparing the performance capabilities and key features of these two Karcher pressure washers so you can decide if you should go for a K5 or a K7.
Karcher K5 vs K7 Summary
Karcher K5 pressure washers have a maximum flow rate of 500 L/ hour and 145 bar pressure, whereas Karcher K7 models have a maximum flow rate of 550 L/ hour and 180 bar pressure. The K7 also has a higher maximum water feed temperature and is more expensive and larger than the K5.
|Feature||Karcher K5||Karcher K7|
|Max Pressure||145 bar||180 bar|
|Max Flow Rate||500 L/ hour||550 L/ hour|
|Max Water Feed Temperature||40°C||60°C|
|Hose Length||8 meters on Compact version, 10 meters on Control versions||10 meters on all versions|
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Performance (Pressure and Flow Rate)
The performance of a pressure washer is dictated by the maximum pressure capability and flow rate of the machine. The K7 is a more expensive, and hence more powerful pressure washer compared to the K5.
The K7 has a maximum flow rate of 550 L/ hour compared to the K5 which has a maximum flow rate of 500 L/hour. Hence the K7 has a 10% higher flow rate.
The K7 also has a maximum pressure rating of 180 bar whereas the K5 has a max pressure rating of 145 bar. This makes the K7 24% more powerful compared to the K5.
Both these machines are highly capable of dealing with cars, patios, outdoor furniture and fences and you’ll struggle to find a job that the K5 struggles with.
If you’re cleaning a car and using a snow foam cannon then you’ll find that the K7 allows it to produce thicker foam. However, you can still get very thick foam from the K5.
There are different versions of the K5 and K7 to consider here.
The K5 has 3 variants: Compact, Power Control and Premium Smart Control. The compact model is of course a lot smaller, but the Power Control and Premium Smart Control models are similar sizes to each other.
The K7 has 2 variants: Compact and Premium Smart Control.
All versions of the K7 are heavier than the K5 models, however the K7 Compact is smaller than the K5 Power Control and Premium Smart Control.
Here is a table comparing the dimensions of each pressure washer.
|K5 Compact||35.4 cm||30.8 cm||52.0 cm||12.0 kg|
|K5 Power Control||40.2 cm||30.6 cm||58.8 cm||13.0 kg|
|K5 Premium Smart Control||41.4 cm||30.6 cm||58.8 cm||13.9 kg|
|K7 Compact||37.8 cm||29.1 cm||51.6 cm||15.8 kg|
|K7 Premium Smart Control||45.9 cm||33.0 cm||66.6 cm||17.8 kg|
|K5 Compact||13.9″||12.1″||20.5″||26.5 lbs|
|K5 Power Control||15.8”||12.0”||23.1”||28.7 lbs|
|K5 Premium Smart Control||16.3″||12.0″||23.1″||30.6 lbs|
|K7 Compact||14.9”||11.5”||20.3”||34.8 lbs|
|K7 Premium Smart Control||18.1”||13.0”||26.2”||39.2 lbs|
Other Key Differences
- The K5 Compact has an 8 meter hose. All other versions of the K5 and all versions of the K7 have 10 meter hoses.
- K5 models have a maximum water feed temperature of 40°C whereas K7 models have a maximum water feed temperature of 60°C.
- K5 models have a power rating of 2.1 kW whereas K7 models have a power rating of 2.8 kW so will use more electricity.
Compact vs Power Control vs Premium Smart Control
As I mentioned previously, there are different versions of the K5 and K7.
- K5 models: Compact, Power Control and Premium Smart Control
- K7 models: Compact and Premium Smart Control
All versions of the same model number (e.g. K5) have the same flow rate, pressure rating, motor-cooling mechanism, power rating and maximum water feed temperature.
Aside from the size differences, the differences between the “Compact” and “Control” models are the trigger designs, hose lengths (only on K5 models) and detergent application method.
The difference between the “Power Control” and “Premium Smart Control” versions are:
- The Power Control models come with 2 nozzles (dirt blaster and vario) whereas the Premium Smart Control models have a single multi-jet nozzle with different settings.
- The Premium Smart Control models have an integrated hose reel, unlike the Power Control models.
- The Premium Smart Control versions connect via BlueTooth to an app to assist you with choosing the right setting.
Here are two tables to summarise the differences between each version.
K5 Model Variants
|Feature||K5 Compact||K5 Power Control||K5 Premium Smart Control Home|
|Hose Length||8 meters||10 meters||10 meters|
|Weight (without accessories)||12.0 kg||13.0 kg||13.9 kg|
|Dimensions (L x W x H)||40.2 x 30.6 x 58.8 cm||40.2 x 30.6 x 58.8 cm||41.4 x 30.6 x 58.8 cm|
|Detergent Application||Suction||Plug and Clean||Plug and Clean|
|LED Display on Trigger||No||Yes||Yes|
|Integrated Hose Reel||No||No||Yes|
|Accessories Included||Vario Lance|
K7 Model Variants
|Feature||K7 Compact||K7 Premium Smart Control Home|
|Weight (without accessories)||15.8 kg||17.8 kg|
|Dimensions (L x W x H)||37.8 x 29.1 x 51.6 cm||45.9 x 33.0 x 66.6 cm|
|Detergent Application||Suction||Plug and Clean|
|LED Display on Trigger||No||Yes|
|Integrated Hose Reel||No||Yes|
|Accessories Included||Vario Lance Dirt Blaster||Multi-Jet Lance Patio Cleaner|
Which Pressure Washer is Best?
In my opinion, the Karcher K5 Compact is the pressure washer which offers the best value for money. It offers excellent performance and is very unlikely to be challenged when it is used in the garden or for cleaning cars.
With the K5 Compact you aren’t overpaying for the extra pressure (which in the vast majority of cases is not necessary) or accessories/ features (such as the app connectivity) which I don’t think are worth the additional cost.
The only drawback of the K5 Compact is that the 8 meter hose is a bit short for some situations. However, there are many better quality aftermarket hoses which are much cheaper than the price difference between the K5 Compact and Power Control should you feel the need to upgrade it.
Check out the Karcher K5 Compact on Amazon for the current price.
Karcher K5 Compact
Full Specification List
|Feature||K5 Compact||K5 Power Control||K5 Premium Smart Control Home||K7 Compact||K7 Premium Smart Control Home|
|Current Type||230-240 V||230-240 V||230-240 V||230 V||230-240 V|
|Minimum Pressure||20 bar||20 bar||20 bar||20 bar||20 bar|
|Maximum Pressure||145 bar||145 bar||145 bar||180 bar||180 bar|
|Max Flow Rate||500 L/ hour||500 L/ hour||500 L/ hour||550 L/ hour||550 L/ hour|
|Area Performance||40 m2/ hour||40 m2/ hour||40 m2/ hour||60 m2/ hour||60 m2/ hour|
|Water Feed Max Temp||40°C||40°C||40°C||60°C||60°C|
|Power Cable Length||5 meters||5 meters||5 meters||5 meters||5 meters|
|Hose Length||8 meters||10 meters||10 meters||10 meters||10 meters|
|Weight (without accessories)||13 kg||13.0 kg||13.9 kg||15.8 kg||17.8 kg|
|Dimensions (L x W x H)||35.4 x 30.8 x 52.0 cm||40.2 x 30.6 x 58.8 cm||41.4 x 30.6 x 58.8 cm||37.8 x 29.1 x 51.6 cm||45.9 x 33.0 x 66.6 cm|
|Detergent Application||Suction||Plug and Clean||Plug and Clean||Suction||Plug and Clean|
|LED Display on Trigger||No||Yes||Yes||No||Yes|
|Quick Connect on Machine||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|Integrated Hose Reel||No||No||Yes||No||Yes|
|Accessories Included||Vario Lance Dirt Blaster||Vario Lance Dirt Blaster||Multi-Jet Lance Patio Cleaner||Vario Lance Dirt Blaster||Multi-Jet Lance Patio Cleaner|
Still unsure which Karcher model you should go for? Check out my complete guide to the Karcher Pressure Washer range to learn more.
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